Also..... Dear lord, the new Jane Eyre miniseries looks so good! A few corny bits to be sure, but also lip-bitingly tasty. The Jane in this one seems to come across a little less fakey than usual, thank goodness - naive, a little too common and familiar, and occasionally kind of a spaz. The male lead is still much too dashing, but who really wants their Rochester to look like Jack Black (besides me)? Once I've calmed down about it a tad, I may be able to analyze it in a more mature fashion.....but for now, I'm squandering all my breaktimes watching cruddy clips on YouTube and trying not to wet my pants in adolescent glee.
The zombies are back. Back with a proverbial vengeance (is there a proverb about being "back with a vengeance"? There should be.). Last night was action-packed nightmares, including a zombie cat, zombie baby, and a disarming, gentlemanly zombie who grinned sheepishly when I averted his zombie lunge at my face. He may have wanted to devour my entrails, but damn, he was cute.
I went to the nearby Barnes & Noble last week to try to find a good book for Amanda's soon-to-be-new baby. In my mind, I wanted a hardback book of fairy tales and/or folk tales, relatively well-told, with engaging, colorful illustrations. They had nothing. Virtually no middle ground between "Cinderella Barbie" and a picture-free Complete Stories of Hans Christian Anderson. When I was little, I had a book of fairy tales full of Restoration-attired characters in lush, stylized environments, and nerdy me always loved to flip through it and reabsorb the goodness of it. The stories weren't told all that well (and now-days, I'd probably try to find something a little less ethnocentric) but it was one of the first books where I really felt the pleasure of reading, as a chance to experience something new and/or exotic. As flaky as it may be to think that can be passed on through the gift of one book, I was really excited about the prospect of finding just the right one - and was feeling really grumpy when nothing was up to snuff. However, just as I was mentally grousing "Kids these days....tch!!", I saw a kindergarten-looking girl lead her little sister over to a life-size cutout of Johnny Depp...
Big sister: This is Jack. Little sister: Is he real? Big sister: No.... say hi to Jack. Little sister [softly, stroking arm of cutout reverently]: Hi Jack...hi.... Big sister [also softly]: Hi Jack...
I just can't express how much the quiet intensity of their Jack Sparrow worship cheered me up! It was like a card fell out of the sky saying "make-believe is not dead.". They kept talking to him, but I left shortly after, starting to feel self-conscious about lurking in the children's section unaccompanied. Thanks, though, Nameless Little Girls!
Amanda's going to have a little boy! As opposed to a humongous bighead boy, I guess.... I'm not jealous, exactly, but now there's a part of me that suddenly feels like it must be time for one of my own. Honestly, though - I only want a baby right now so I can dress it up in cute jumpers and take it to the park....maybe I could just rent one.
I'm trying very hard not rush to judgment about the name they are going to give the baby. Maybe then no one will give me any guff when I christen my child Bastian Balthazar Bux.
Recently, as I've been falling asleep each evening, I've mulled over the normal, boring, day-to-day bits of worrisome-ness.....job, relationships, effective pest control....nothing too troublesome.
But then when I am finally asleep and starting to dream it's been ZOMBIES ZOMBIES ZOMBIES!!!!
Seriously, at least 60% of my dreams in the last week or so have involved the undead. Frantic running from zombies. Tearful pleading to be delivered from zombies. Tense, thoughtful moments pondering my impending zombiehood.
Though if the only alternative was one of those long, detailed dreams where I was at my job, just working - I would gratefully take a zombie dream, hands down.
I thought I was too cynical and worldly to be affected it.....but "The Office" broke my heart a little bit last night. Damn you, NBC! You know my cold granite heart melts instantly at the sight of a man in tears!
I went out on a date yesterday with a new guy (not even a date, really...more like a proto-date). He was nice enough, very cute, but it didn't seem like we had a lot in common. And then he randomly, earnestly said to me - "I really like your glasses". So of course, there's a teeny part of me that is now completely smitten....*sigh*. It's like the angel of the lord whispered in his ear and told him how best to butter up a girl who usually gets suspicious at compliments (and who both embraces and loathes her own nerdiness, for that matter)....
I really, really hate it when people I'm only faintly acquainted with touch me on the back or the arm in a congenial manner. Especially if said people are a)male and/or b)trying to sell me something or get me to do them a favor. Is there some managerial psychology manual somewhere which asserts that lightly touching a business contact or colleague in a warm and familiar way while speaking to them helps to create an atmosphere of cooperation and we're-all-in-this-together-ness? If Mr. Pompous J. Phonyman doesn't stop briefly putting his hand on my shoulder while he's talking to me, I'm going to have to take a few steps back every time he opens his mouth in my presence...
Mr. P: Here's the cell phone breakdown back. Are you the person to give this to? Can you check and make sure they're charging the correct rate for peak time and non-peak time consistently? Miss A: No problem, I'll look over that and get back to you. Great! Thanks! Mr. P: Thanks so much, hear? (touches shoulder randomly) Miss A (internally): I hate you and your lame urgent issues. Also, get your damn hand off of me. Also, I am not your freaking secretary and I don't even work in your department. Leave now!!
Thus ends my self-involved, no-one-else-gives entry for the day. Great! Thanks for your time and effort! If you have any problems or questions, please feel free to give me a call. Have a wonderful day!
8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature, plus more for pan
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for the pans
1 cup boiling water
2 teaspoons baking soda
2 teaspoons ground ginger
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons baking powder
2/3 cup packed dark-brown sugar
1 cup unsulfured molasses
1 tablespoon freshly grated ginger
2 large eggs, room temperature, lightly beaten
Confectioners' sugar, for dusting
1. Heat oven to 350°. Butter and flour a 9-by-13-inch cake pan; set aside. In a bowl, combine boiling water and baking soda; set aside. In a large bowl, sift together flour, ground spices, salt, and baking powder; set aside.
2. In an electric mixer with the paddle attachment, cream butter until light. Beat in brown sugar until fluffy. Beat in molasses and grated ginger, baking-soda mixture, and flour mixture. Beat in eggs.
3. Pour batter into prepared pan; bake until a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean, 30 to 35 minutes. Let cool on a wire rack. Cut into squares; dust with confectioners sugar.
Notes: - I don't have a mixer, but shockingly my gingerbread still turned out just fine blending by hand. - I add a few pinches of black pepper to the other spices - I'm just too rich for Martha's blood... - I also like to substitute whole wheat flour for some of the white flour (probably not more than 1 cup though - might make it too grainy).